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Old 12-30-2011, 08:10 AM   #16
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Specifically excluding some things

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Originally Posted by n175h View Post
EXCEPTIONS
  • dada dada
  • a dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling
  • dada dada
There is part of the rub. As part of my argument with the city manager I told .
... does not include all else (under the requirement for a licensed electrician ... )
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Originally Posted by jproffer View Post
Hmmmm ....a loophole??

Have someone build a shell of a house. No interior walls, no flooring, no kitchen...no finish. Hire a lic electrician to bring in service and add ONE receptacle. Then "ADD" a kitchen, a couple of bedrooms, living room, bathroom, laundry, etc.:
Won't work. In order to reside in the house you have to have a certificate of occupancy. The CO won't be issued on new construction until all then current codes (including two small appliance 20 amp branch circuits with GFCI protected receptacles for the kitchen counters) are met.

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Last edited by AllanJ; 12-30-2011 at 08:16 AM.
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:15 AM   #17
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Won't work. In order to reside in the house you have to have a certificate of occupancy. The CO won't be issued on new construction until all then current codes (including two small appliance 20 amp branch circuits with GFCI protected receptacles for the kitchen counters) are met.

Ah well...it was worth a shot.

I guess it depends on where you live....it would work here, but then again HERE I could just build the whole thing without finding a round-a-bout way of doing it, as long as it passed all the inspections, they care HOW it's done more than WHO does it.
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:24 AM   #18
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Where is here?
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:34 AM   #19
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Chester, IL

I thought I had that on my profile.....maybe that's on the other site

Adding it now. I didn't even notice before you asked that....
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:39 AM   #20
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This is simple. Ask them to provide the actual code that supports their position. By simply throwing the code books at you shows their arrogance.

If you get arrested they can't just say "You broke the law". They HAVE to provide substantiation.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:25 AM   #21
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...There is a home on the adjacent lot which I own and if I have to can move into it for 3 months and declare it my residence. That should satisfy the legal requirement for "a dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling." That will give me legal standing to build the garage/shop on the adjoining lot, then down the road I can sell off the house on the adjacent lot.
If you own multiple homes/lots in the same city, then they are going to know that. And I would imagine it would look to them like you are building homes or buying them and fixing them up to sell later on. Does not matter if you really are going to live there or not, it is what they think you night possibly do.

In my state you are required to live in a house for two years if fixing it up. I guess they figure if it hasn't burned down or collapsed in two years, then it is safe for someone else to live in.

Or these could be laws put in place by the contractors to force people to use their services.

If however you bought and owned just one lot, then set up a tent or parked an RV there to live in. And then wanted to build your own home there, then that would look like a different situation and they might allow that?

I don't think living is a *separate* lot next door would be any different to them than living where you are now.

You might research if anyone under any circumstances is ever allowed to build their own home in your area? Perhaps this might be allowed in a different nearby town?

Or perhaps find a general contractor who will build the smallest house possible and allow you to do most of the work. Then once built, you could move in, then add on to the house.
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:04 PM   #22
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Well, I struck out.

We had another pow wow this morning and the chief inspector pulled up the state statute that authorizes the homeowner to do electrical work "only if the owner lives in the dwelling".

Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act. Sec 1305.003 EXEMPTIONS (6) work not specifically regulated by a municipal ordinance that is performed in or on a dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling;

So, since I currently don't live in the house on the adjacent lot I cannot do the electrical. Also noteworthy. He is reading this to state that if a person owns a vacant lot in the city, he CANNOT wire a new home being built on that lot even if the owner plans to make that his residence. Unfortunately, I cannot refute his claim anywhere in the statute.

We then talked about plumbing. It is the same restriction. However, it uses the wording "homestead" in its exemptions instead of "dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling."

You can't have a vacant lot as your homestead in Texas. A livable dwelling must be on it to be declared. Therefore, with the above language you cannot plumb a new home on your own land.

This all is Texas statutes, not my local jurisdiction. They adopt the state statutes as their guide. Plumbers and electricians lobby our legislators in Austin very effectively.

I guess I'm not building my shop for now.
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:32 PM   #23
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As much as most people hate beurocrates and city hall,
the fact is most of the time they do win !
If they have been at there job long enough
then they would probably know a thousand different
ways to make your life difficult.
If they cant get you one way,
then they will come at you from another angle,
And they will get you, sooner or later.

Even if you know you are right,
most of the time it is pointless fighting city hall.
The system is set up so they do win 99.99% of the time.

If you are annoyed, remember that at election time
cause thats the only way you can protest.
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:59 PM   #24
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Move a trailer to the property, pitch a tent, and live in while you build?
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Old 12-30-2011, 06:18 PM   #25
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I'd have to that MN has a much clearer description:
Generally, Minnesota law requires all electrical work to be
performed by licensed, bonded and insured electrical
contractors and their employees.
Homeowners, within strict limitations, are exempt from
electrical licensing. An owner is a natural person who
physically performs electrical work on premises the person
owns and actually occupies as a residence or owns and will
occupy as a residence
upon completion of construction.
MN Stat 326B.31, Subd. 22
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:11 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n175h View Post
Well, I struck out.

We had another pow wow this morning and the chief inspector pulled up the state statute that authorizes the homeowner to do electrical work "only if the owner lives in the dwelling".

Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act. Sec 1305.003 EXEMPTIONS (6) work not specifically regulated by a municipal ordinance that is performed in or on a dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling;

So, since I currently don't live in the house on the adjacent lot I cannot do the electrical. Also noteworthy. He is reading this to state that if a person owns a vacant lot in the city, he CANNOT wire a new home being built on that lot even if the owner plans to make that his residence. Unfortunately, I cannot refute his claim anywhere in the statute.

We then talked about plumbing. It is the same restriction. However, it uses the wording "homestead" in its exemptions instead of "dwelling by a person who owns and resides in the dwelling."

You can't have a vacant lot as your homestead in Texas. A livable dwelling must be on it to be declared. Therefore, with the above language you cannot plumb a new home on your own land.

This all is Texas statutes, not my local jurisdiction. They adopt the state statutes as their guide. Plumbers and electricians lobby our legislators in Austin very effectively.

I guess I'm not building my shop for now.
Are the 2 lots considered to be on the same property?
If the lots are not combined id say youre probably screwed.
Ive worked in many states/towns over the years,they all have their own set of rules.
Omaha will let a homeowner do their own minor wiring,but you cant pull a homeowners permit to plumb anything in omaha(thanks local 16 )
most other towns will allow a homeowner to do most anything if they can prove they live there
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:33 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plummen View Post
Are the 2 lots considered to be on the same property?
If the lots are not combined id say youre probably screwed.
Ive worked in many states/towns over the years,they all have their own set of rules.
Omaha will let a homeowner do their own minor wiring,but you cant pull a homeowners permit to plumb anything in omaha(thanks local 16 )
most other towns will allow a homeowner to do most anything if they can prove they live there
They are two contiguous platted lots. I had planned to build the shop on the adjacent lot which currently is addressed with the house on the second lot, then sell the house and build next to the shop. I can't blame the city guys. This is a state statute from Austin. If our city adopts the NEC, IRC, IBC, and plumbing code, the state statute is worded as such that it goes with it. The city could even make it more stringent if it wanted.

Legally, even a guy on his farm cannot build a new house, wire it and plumb it, but the state leaves the individual counties as the enforcement agent, and in our county we don't have licensing enforcement agents as of now, so if I lived in the county I could build new and wire and plumb my own home. I did hear today from our city's code officer that our county is looking into establishing a code enforcement department, so in the future the good old days will soon be gone.

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